Online or high street estate agents

The number of ways to sell property has increased considerably over the last five or so years, mainly because of new online platforms and agencies that allow you to sell property yourself. While there are some noticeable advantages of using an online-only estate agent, high street agents have their benefits too. We take a look at the pros and cons of both to find out the best way to sell your property hassle-free.

Using an online-only estate agent

More and more online estate agency services have cropped up over the last few years having spotted the need for a more affordable way to sell a home. With these new companies introducing a cheaper way to advertise and sell property, it is inevitable that more will follow their lead.  


  • Online estate agents are by far a cheaper option than using a traditional agent. Most online companies will charge a set fee for their service while high street estate agents can charge between 1.5% and 2.5% of the property price. If the property is valued at £300,000, the fee could be as much as £6,000 compared to an online fee of £395.
  • Online agencies usually offer a number of services in a package which can include professional photos, floor plans, ‘for sale’ boards and property listings on major property websites like RightMove and Zoopla.
  • They are easy to reach over the internet and on the phone.

Top five online estate agents

  • offers different packages to help sell your home, ranging from one complete fee of £395 to a monthly fee of £99 until completion.
  • offers a package (including 12 months marketing and property website listings) from £249 plus VAT.
  • offers a £59.95 monthly fee or a one off payment of £294.95 for their service
  • offers three different packages and claims their average customer saves around £3,700
  • offers a standard and a full service ranging from £195 to £1,295


  • You will have to do some of the legwork yourself, like take viewings
  • Some online estate agents won’t advertise your property on popular online property portals, like Rightmove, so check this before you sign up. 
  • Watch out for online estate agencies who are not members of the Property Ombudsman. Don’t be caught out by a too-good-to-be-true service.

Using a high street estate agent

Traditional estate agents have been a seller’s first port of call for a long time and have helped millions secure a property sale. While they do charge a lot more for their service, customers have peace of mind knowing that a well-established expert is working for them.


  • A local high street agent will have expertise in the property market and will know the value of different properties in the area very well. An online agent may not have this depth of knowledge and experience.
  • High street estate agents will do everything for you, from advertising your property to conducting viewings.
  • You can meet your estate agent in person throughout the process to discuss any issues or problems.


  • As they charge a percentage of the property price for their service, the more expensive your home is, the higher the fee.
  • If you have a busy or demanding job, finding the time to pop in to see your agent during the week could prove difficult.

Which estate agent should I choose?

If you are strapped for cash and willing to do a bit of extra work, selling your property through an online estate agent is definitely worth considering. You can always test the water there and if the quality or volume of the viewings does not meet your expectation, you have a back-up plan.

If you need a solution that takes everything out of your hands, the traditional route may be more for you. Ask local friends and neighbours for personal recommendations for a local high street estate agent that you feel you can trust. Again, if they do not come up with the results, you can try an alternative agent or switch to the online approach.

Remember to ensure the estate agent you choose (online or not) is a member of the Property Ombudsman and the National Association of Estate Agents. This will make sure you avoid hiring any dodgy firms.

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This information should not be interpreted as financial advice. Mortgage and loan rates are subject to change.